Archive for June, 2016

Unbalanced connections to a balanced input

30/06/2016 Leave a comment

There is one thing I really, really hate and that is people who try to do shortcuts. Take this connection for example. A client calls me, saying that there is a terrible buzzing sound from the system in the meeting room. So I disable the floorpoint, you know the one, the one with the VGA connector and 1/8″ stereo minijack.

In any case, I look at the cable and trace it to the ClearOne processor in the audio rack. This is what greets my eye. Look at the bottom part of the connector with the orange jumper cable. That is am unbalanced connection being connected to a balanced input. No wonder there was a hum. The unbalanced line was running at more than 20 metre to the audio rack, and was running next to a power line. I told the client I could not fix it today but I would order the necessary parts and do so


Wonderful Malaysia

29/06/2016 Leave a comment

Yep. I jest you not. I came across these electrical cables installed at a client’s place and saw that the cables were made in Malaysia, and I needed a reminder that it was Wonderful Malaysia. But jokes aside, I am fully for that because I bought a lot of electrical stuff in Malaysia and the quality was pretty good. So does Wonderful Malaysia cables justify it? Probably.

Char siew pau for breakfast in the mornings

28/06/2016 Leave a comment

There are some mornings when I have to be at a client’s office early. So when I wake up, I get a “breakfast-to-go” which are actually a couple of char siew pau, or roast meat buns. I always walk past coffee shops that have steamers like this and more often than not, that is my sign that the shop has such steamed buns. They are very convenient to eat and very delicious. Most coffee shops in Singapore have these steamers. So if you want a breakfast pick-me-up but do not have the time, get a couple of steamed buns, or in local parlance, paus.

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LG FB162 mini component system

27/06/2016 Leave a comment

Saw this in the office of a client and my mind went back to the days when these things by LG sold like hot-cakes. LG went on a big spiel then, signing up Mark Levinson and saying that the audio legend had tuned their systems and thus, it was worth getting. To be honest, there was nothing special about these systems and from what I can see, it was a marketing gimmick of sorts to get everyone to buy them because Mr Levinson had tuned them. In any case, I searched the Internet and I managed to come up with one of LG’s advertisements

There you go. All in all, an affordable system and worth it if you have a small cafe and just want to listen to music. Other than that, you pay your money and you get what you pay for.

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Vicks VapoRub

26/06/2016 Leave a comment

For as long as I have known, it is always essential to have a bottle of Vicks Vaporub in your home. I had asthma as a little kid. I remember my mum coming into my room and rubbing Vicks all over my chest. It was sticky (it is an ointment after all) and made my pajama tops stick to my chest but it was a welcome relief. It sure helped me breathe easier. Now i use it when I have a cold, which is not often admittedly. I have a jar of it now, on my desk, ready for my cold if I have it. Also, if you have a sinus headache, inhaling the vapors can help open up your clogged passageways. All you need to do is rub a tiny bit of Vicks under your nose. Another method for non-sinus headaches is to rub a small amount onto your temples. It’s thought to relieve the pressure you can feel from your headache.

There are many more other uses for this. You all should get one and have one handy for in your house too.

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The Brexit Vote – The United Kingdom is out of the EU

25/06/2016 Leave a comment

I grabbed this screenshot yesterday. I was quite astounded to tell you the truth. In case anyone is curious about Brexit, I saw this online post from Moneysmart.SG Blog and I find their explanation to be the best of all:

Essentially, many people in Britain weren’t too happy with the way their country operated within the European Union. At the risk of oversimplifying the situation, the EU acts like a single entity. Being part of the EU meant that Britain had to adopt the EU’s policies on immigration, their trade and commerce regulations and other laws, many of which Britain felt were disadvantageous to them.

In fact, as much as possible, Britain has consistently tried to keep their national identity intact despite being a part of this group of 28 countries in Europe. For example, unlike a majority of the member countries which has since adopted a shared currency, the Euro, Britain has kept the Pound Sterling.

However, objectively speaking, there are just as many benefits that come with Britain being a part of the EU and a major player at that. For one thing, as part of a single market, Britain also enjoys the freedom to trade, work and travel to other countries in the EU. Those in Britain who favour staying in the EU are effectively saying that the benefits of staying within the EU far outweigh the economic disadvantages and the loss of autonomy and identity that come with that decision.

If you ask me what I think of it, I personally think that UK should have remained part of the EU. But then again, I am not from the UK so what I say and think probably holds no water. The people of the UK have voted and this is the result. The EU have said that it is an irreversible process and even the Prime Minister David Cameron, who was against Brexit, has resigned. Well, the pro-Brexit UK economists said that there will be a lull first and then it will get better. Well, I sure as hell am not an economist but the very fact that the Brexit announcement made the UK pound drop to new lows not seen since 1985, it is pretty alarming.

Oh well…such is the power of a democracy. You are free to vote but I personally think…sometimes we have to be careful what we wish for. We might just get it.

SanDisk SSD Plus 240Gb SSD hard drive

24/06/2016 1 comment

Some time back, I wrote about an Intel 80Gb SSD drive that I got from my client. Now that SSD hard drive has started to fill up in an alarming manner. 80Gb just don’t cut it anymore. I had to live without my MP3s, my movies and I had to be very careful that I did not max it out with applications and programs. That is when I decided to bite the bullet, cough up $92 dollars and the result? This Sandisk SSD Plus SSD drive

U saw the review on Amazon. Pretty good I must say. But I was drawn into the price of this drive and the 240Gb capacity of it. It was practically a no-brainer and loading the drive was pretty fast with Windows 7. It has a read speed of up to 535 MB/s, a write speed of up to 445 MB/s and it has a SATA Revision 3.0 (6 Gb/s) interface. It fit in my trusty 5-year-old HP EliteBook notebook with ease and does that notebook fly!

I downloaded some software for it too…the SanDisk SSD Dashboard. The SanDisk SSD Dashboard helps users maintain peak performance of the SanDisk SSD in Windows operating systems with a user-friendly graphical interface. The SanDisk SSD Dashboard includes tools for analysis of the disk (including the disk model, capacity, firmware version, and S.M.A.R.T. attributes) and firmware updates. So in a fact, it is very useful. I have not downloaded the .Net Framework that requires to run it but once I do, I think I will be ready to go

So if you need a good, inexpensive SSD drive, get this. There are faster ones out there but from what I have, this is the least expensive


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